Posted: December 23
all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled
(2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
packed light brown sugar
pure vanilla extract
semisweet chocolate chips (12 ounces)
chopped walnuts or pecans, coarsely chopped (optional)
Heat oven to 350° F. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda.
Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugars on medium-high speed until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. One at a time, beat in the eggs, then the vanilla. Reduce speed to low and gradually add the flour mixture, mixing until just combined (do not overmix). Mix in the chocolate chips and nuts (if desired) by hand.
Drop heaping tablespoonfuls of the dough onto baking sheets, spacing them 2 inches apart.
Bake, rotating the baking sheets halfway through, until golden around the edges but still soft in the center, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool slightly on the baking sheets, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely. Store the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.